A Study on Group Theory and Learning

Last Updated: 13 Apr 2021
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It is apparent that the definition of a group has non been agreed on by most bookmans. As most people to a great extent emphasize on the common ends or the mutuality of its members, offering a subjective definition. In all this changing analysis, it is agreed that groups are made up of two or more persons.

The definition of group offered by Brown ( 2000, p.3 ) `` a group exits when two or more people define themselves as members of it and its being is recognized by at least one other '' .

Groups have existed and evolved with adult male and are seldom without issues. Groups all around the universe are confronted with similar issues, irrespective of its geographical location. Most of these issues may originate in the forming and ramping phases of group formation ( Bruce Wayne Tuckman, phases of group development ) , though some of these issues may besides harvest up in the latter phases of the group.

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There are many different theories of how people learn. Burns ( 1995, p99 ) conceives of larning as a comparatively lasting alteration in behavior with behavior including both discernible activity and internal procedures such as thought, attitudes and emotions. It is apparent that motive has been included in Burns ' definition of larning. Burns considers that larning might non attest itself in discernible behavior until sometime after the educational plan has taken topographic point.

Harmonizing to Kolb ( 1995 ) , people learn in four ways with the likeliness of developing one manner of larning more than another. He said one can larn through:

  • concrete experience
  • observation and contemplation
  • abstract conceptualization
  • active experimentation

The thought that people learn in different ways has been explored by many research workers. Honey and Mumford ( 1986 cited in McGill & A ; Beaty 1995 p.177 ) edifice on Kolb 's work, identified four larning manners:

  • Activist ( enjoys the experience itself ) ,
  • Reflector ( spends a great trade of clip and attempt reflecting )
  • Theorist ( good at doing connexions and abstracting thoughts from experience )
  • Pragmatist ( enjoys the planning phase )

Motivation `` Has to make with a set of independent variables relationship that explain the way, aptitude and continuity of an person 's behavior, keeping changeless the effects of aptitude, accomplishment and apprehension of the undertaking, and restraints runing in the environment. ( Campbell and Pritchard 1976 ) .

It is believed that the demand and motivation of a individual is what pushes him /her to act in a certain manner. Therefore an person 's ends and aspirations in life can function as a determiner in the manner the individual behaves. However this ends and aspirations differ from one individual to the other.

Harmonizing to Buchanan and Huczynski ( 2004 ) motive can be explored in three distinguishable positions viz. ends, determinations and influence.

Goals serve as the chief motivation of our behavior. Therefore the ends and aspirations or what a individual wants to accomplish will do an person to act in a certain mode to accomplish that peculiar end. E.g. If a individual wants to go a medical physician in future that individuals behaviour and political orientations will all be geared towards the accomplishment of this peculiar end.

Decisions the second on the perspective list negotiations about why we choose to prosecute certain ends. For case if we should take the MBA category as an illustration and inquire what motivates each pupil to analyze, it will involvement you to cognize that we will acquire many replies. For some pupils it is the expected wages that they will acquire after their class like publicity, pay rise etc. for other pupils it could be the position acknowledgment of acquiring alphabets at the terminal of their names, whiles others derive satisfaction from larning or wonder. This is what is being described as the `` Cognitive determination - devising '' procedures act uponing an person 's pick of ends.

The 3rd on the perspective list is that of influence which talks about what and how to actuate an person to work harder here accent is laid on societal influence.


Working for Vodafone, a telecommunication company, I had the chance to work with the operations director, a adult male who had attained his Masters in Business Administration. Under his supervising, he demonstrated a high degree of public presentation which was obviously seen in his structured attack to determination devising. He approached new challenges that confronted him in a strategic mode and executed undertakings efficaciously by achieving ends from company processs and procedures. I have since so been motivated by the worth of managerial cognition and accomplishments that where displayed by the operations director, animating me to offer a graduate student grade in Business Administration.

In explicating my motive in the visible radiation of Vroom 's anticipation theory, with the underlying subject which states that motive depends on `` how much we want something and how likely we think we are to acquire it '' Griffin and Moorhe ( 2007, p.98 ) and which revolves around the three cardinal variables of valency ( the value of the expected wages ) , anticipation ( the believe that attempt will take to public presentation ) and instrumentality ( the believe that the public presentation will take to a coveted result ) .

In detecting the operations director my first reaction was to derive such managerial accomplishments and I knew I had a sensible opportunity of accomplishing it. In using the three variables ( valency, instrumentality and anticipation ) I believed that my attempts to inscribe in a maestro 's grade will give to the attainment of Masterss in concern disposal and comprehending that there was a high chance that the Masterss in concern disposal will ensue in geting the managerial accomplishments.

In malice of the utility in utilizing Vroom 's anticipation theory to explicate motive, harmonizing to Griffin and Moore ( 2007 ) it has been to a great extent criticized about its complexness and how hard it is to prove. Furthermore research workers find the relationship among its variables less scientific, doing it hard to look into. Another short approach of this theory is that it non applicable in topographic points where people think God causes the result of every single behavior. Example Muslim states.

However, I think the theory has been really utile in explicating the construct of motive and besides giving directors really of import guidelines in understanding the employee and how he can be motivated.

As it is justly said by Nicol Morgan ( Granfell Investment Management ) `` motive is non about money, it was about making an environment in which people enjoyed working '' .The motive to offer my Masterss in Bangor University out of a host of Universities both in The United land and The United States of America, Bangor offered an first-class repute as a Centre for concern surveies, by chalking success in the 2008 UK authorities 's Research Assessment Exercise, by puting foremost.

It besides proved to be a universe category research Centre and a staff with strong international experience all packaged in an enabling environment for acquisition.

In regard to Herzberg 's motivator-hygiene theory, Bangor University was able to fulfill my hygiene demands by offering basic installations such as a school library, stocked with up- to- day of the month academic resources, adjustment installations for international pupils and besides supplying a safe acquisition environment.

The proviso of such installations did non actuate me, but instead prevented me from being dissatisfied, cognizing that such installations are available in most Universities. My motive to analyze at Bangor came approximately when the university met my higher degrees demands, by turn outing to be a universe category research Centre, been among the extremely graded concern schools in the UK and supplying a really international instruction staff, to assist derive cognition and experience all over the universe from a wider position.

This is shown in the diagram below


  • Library Facility




( DZANIE 2010 )

Like any other theory, Herzberg two factor theory has besides suffered unfavorable judgments. Harmonizing to Mullins ( 2005 ) the theory is said to use least to persons with unskilled occupations which are humdrum in range. As they are those who mostly present direction with issues of motive. Nevertheless I believe the theory has been utile in understanding motive non merely in the work topographic point but besides to our day-to-day lives.


My larning attack to surveies has chiefly been the memorisation of facts, without associating the cognition acquired to any experience. From my secondary school through to my undergraduate survey, I have ever been a surface scholar. Where the chief focal point was merely to follow what the course of study demanded. This learning manner was rather effectual because in my educational life accent was laid much more on closed ended scrutiny than giving out regular assignments.

However, in a different acquisition environment and more particularly in my Masters degree taking a deep acquisition attack will be good. Though hard, holding been a surface scholar, seting down my old theoretical account of larning to a deep scholar will intend an active engagement in the class work, obtaining a practical apprehension of theories and constructs and holding a critical head set in work outing jobs. All these properties of a deep scholar will develop and fit me with the necessary accomplishments to associate my acquired cognition in MBA to the of all time increasing challenges in the corporate universe.

Second, my pick of being a deep scholar is farther strengthened by the undermentioned factors ;

a ) The teacher pupil relationship:

The larning relationship between talks and their pupils have a dominating influence on how pupils approach larning. For illustration in a acquisition establishment where instructors do non put much accent on assignments and instead stress more on closed ended appraisals, pupils are likely to a adopt a surface attack to larning. A survey conducted by Kember as cited in Tight et Al, ( 2009 ) on how Asiatic pupils learn, showed that the pupils approach to larning was consistent with the appraising demands of pupils by their instructors. In my experience of larning at the undergraduate surveies, lectors require pupils to memorise talk notes and to regurgitate the words of the lector in their concluding tests, obliging most pupils to prosecute in surface acquisition. This attack to larning in the local idiom is termed `` chaw, pour, base on balls and forget '' .

Deciding to take a deep attack to acquisition was influenced by the instructor pupil relationship in Bangor University.Lectureres in the University require pupils to prosecute in a deep degree of acquisition, associating theory to existent life experiences, measuring and analysing theories and constructs to do intending out of it, as against merely the memorisation and reproduction of talk notes.

B ) The work burden of classs

Prosecuting in a deep acquisition attack is influenced by my cognition of work involved in each class. In their analysis Entwistle & A ; Ramsden ( 1983 ) as cited in Tight et Al, ( 2009 ) established that pupils are likely to prosecute in surface, strategic or deep acquisition, depending on the grade of work burden that is accompanied with the class. A surface larning attack is adopted when pupils perceive a high grade of work burden in their classs, as there is no clip to prosecute in deep acquisition. A relevant illustration will be the decrease of the concern faculties from 12 to eight. Students might hold been forced to prosecute in surface or strategic acquisition because of the of all time increasing work load from their classs, go forthing them with small or no clip to prosecute in deep acquisition. A restructure of the class this academic twelvemonth have reduced the work load well, and this will give me the clip and chance to prosecute in deep acquisition.

degree Celsius ) The learning establishment

Furthermore my attack is progressively shaped by the learning establishment. I.e. Bangor University. As it is justly said by californium Barnett ( 1990 cited in Tight et Al, 2009, p.12 ) `` The features of deep attack to larn can be seen to reflect what are by and large held to be purposes of higher instruction '' . During the initiation subdivision held by the University of Bangor, pupils were briefed by senior lectors about what is expected of them by the University. Students were advised and encouraged to prosecute in critical thought, avoid doing premises and analyze an statement, looking for failing in the arguement.Also pupils where asked non to reproduce talk notes or regurgitate what the talk has said, a feature of surface acquisition, but instead pulling from other beginnings like relevant text books and academic diaries and most significantly abstaining from illicitly copying some 1s work as yours, an act of plagiarism.

The University has hence put in topographic point constructions to promote deep attack to acquisition by supplying the necessary academic resources such as the library, entree to internet and diaries to enable pupils to prosecute in serious academic work by being deep scholars and non surface scholar.

In a nutshell, my determination to a deep acquisition attack can be illustrated in Ramsden ( 2003 ) Student larning in context diagram.

My orientation to larning

My old educational experience as a surface scholar.

The context of larning in the new environment

1. Opened ended appraisal.

2. Synergistic lectors.

The acquisition result is: long term memory and holistic apprehension of the class

My determination to follow a Deep Approach to Learning

My perceptual experience of the work burden, what is required of me as a pupil from the Lecturers and Bangor University

( DZANIE 2010 )


One peculiar issue I anticipate in the group work is the difference in the acquisition manners among group members. Forming a group with a high grade of single diverseness, will certainly amount to a different attack to acquisition and acquisition manners, which is normally influenced by civilization background and the larning environment they came from.

Group members may be absorbing, suiting, diverging or meeting scholars and may be given to lend their attempt more expeditiously if acquisition is directed to their advantage. This was made apparent when I engaged in an experiment carried out by Professor Sally Sambrook ; in an attempt to place the acquisition manners of her pupils utilizing Kolb 's learning manner. I noticed that my learning manner was different in comparism to those of my friends as everyone 's learning manner differed from the other.

However, in turn toing the issue of difference in larning manners. Group members should be assigned to undertakings in relation to 1s larning style/capabilities in order to acquire the best out of the person. Unifying a given undertaking with a individual larning manner penchant will give a positive consequence and hence increasing group efficiency. For illustration members who are diverges are better in making new thoughts and assemblage of information. Delegating a undertaking related to research will be best tailored to their learning manner, thereby giving their upper limit end product to the group.

Second, group members are bound to prosecute in societal idleness. Social idleness occurs when a group member pretends to lend to the activities or attempt of the group. And this is normally seeable at the executing phase of group formation, where the undertaking and the aims of the group are good defined. An experiment conducted by Max Ringelmann ( 1913 ) as cited in Brown ( 2000 ) on societal idleness, asked a group of agribusiness pupils to draw a rope connected to a ergometer to enter the force exerted by the group. He thought that the bigger the size of the group the greater the force it exerted, he subsequently discovered that the force did n't increase proportionally with the size of the group. In consequence there were others in the group who put small attempt or none at all when drawing the rope. This behavior I anticipate in the group work, an attitude that is damaging to the effectivity of the group.

However issues of societal idleness are best addressed by increasing the identifiability of group members. It is improbable to happen members prosecuting in societal idleness when they know they are been ascertained and evaluated separately, a instance of the Hawthorne consequence, when people tend to act otherwise when they know they are been observed. This will increase engagement of single members every bit good as the productiveness of the group. Pulling from my personal experiences with groups, I have noticed that comparatively big groups are normally the genteelness land for societal buming.Keeping a ample group in relation to the undertaking at manus with a clear division of labor in the group can minimise societal idleness.

Despite the legion challenges faced in group work, workings in groups have proved to be effectual non merely in accomplishing group ends but besides has the inclination to develop the person. Working in groups can instil into the single certain properties such as a sense of duty through the division of labor, where group members are assigned undertaking. For illustration after a long period of working in groups in my undergraduate survey I realised that I have improved upon my communicating accomplishments an property that is necessary in the corporate universe.

In add-on, prosecuting in group work particularly in a higher acquisition establishment, can fit a individual with a critical mentality in the reading and rating of academic stuffs, a mark of rational development.


To reason, this essay has identified my motive as triggered by both the worth of managerial accomplishments displayed by the operations director, which was clearly elaborated in Expectancy Theory and the Academic excellence of Bangor University utilizing Herzberg 's incentive and hygiene theory. It has besides highlighted my attack as a deep scholar coming into a new acquisition environment, which is strengthened by the instructor pupil relationship, work load and the learning establishment.And eventually the issues I anticipate in the group to be difference in larning manner and societal idleness.


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A Study on Group Theory and Learning. (2018, Jul 20). Retrieved from https://phdessay.com/a-study-on-group-theory-and-learning/

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